DUNFERMLINE opened their Betfred Cup campaign with a fine victory at Premiership St Mirren this afternoon.

A first half super show, that produced goals for Ryan Dow, Andy Ryan and Tom Beadling, set them up for success despite a second half fightback from the Buddies.

Although Cody Cooke and Danny Mullen struck within two minutes just after the hour mark, Stevie Crawford's team held out to ruin Jim Goodwin's debut as Saints boss.

With one of his 10 summer signings, Euan Murray, injured, Stuart Morrison was drafted into the back four alongside Lee Ashcroft, and full-backs Aaron Comrie and Lewis Martin.

A further four new recruits - Paul Paton, who captained the side, Dow, Kevin Nisbet and Josh Coley - made their competitive bows, while Tom Lang, Kyle Turner, Matty Bowman and Gabby McGill were amongst the substitutes.

And it was Dow, brought in from Peterhead, who had the game's opening chance in the third minute.

He was sent clear down the right and, after checking inside and into the box, sent a low shot that Buddies keeper Vaclav Hladky got a strong hand to.

There was soon a scare at the other end when, after failing to grab ex-Falkirk man Ryan Flynn's looping cross, Ryan Scully produced a brave block to thwart the onrushing Kyle Magennis from close range.

Cody Cooke sent one over the top for the hosts and, while they had sent a couple of decent balls into the Pars box, it was Crawford's men who hit the front after 18 minutes.

Coley started the move, playing a neat one-two with Nisbet, before driving at the heart of Saints' defence.

Although he was brought down as he approached the penalty area, he managed to slip the ball through to Dow, who showed excellent composure to slide the ball under Hladky.

Then, just five minutes later, it got even better for Dunfermline as they doubled their advantage.

Nisbet this time was at the heart of it, moving infield from the left just over halfway before sliding a pass through for Ryan, who had taken position at the right edge of the box.

The hitman took his time, checked inside and then sent a superb curling shot beyond Hladky and into the far corner of his net to send the visiting support into raptures.

Saints full-back Paul McGinn tried to react with a volley from the edge of the box after Morrison's clearing header landed at his feet, but he blazed it over as the visitors continued to look comfortable.

Tony Andreu, one of Saints' summer signings, tried to force the issue with a shot that was blocked and, straight away, the Pars broke through Ryan and Coley, fashioning a decent opportunity for the former, but his shot finished over the bar.

But Dunfermline were not to be denied and, five minutes from half-time, incredibly, they moved three goals ahead.

Beadling sent Ryan clear on the left and, after moving into the box, he hit a shot off the base of the post.

The quickest man to react was former Sunderland midfielder Beadling, who was on hand to poke it home to further stun the Premiership side.

The second half was just seconds old when Morrison suffered a head knock - thankfully he was able to continue - before Gary Mackenzie headed over from a corner for the hosts.

Hesitancy in the Saints backline almost gifted Ryan Dow another chance when, after Andy Ryan left his initial header forward due to being offside, he still managed to get onto the ball ahead of a home defender, who was lucky that the onrushing Hladky bailed him out.

Paul McGinn, again latching on to a clearance at the edge of the area, this time from Ethan Erhahon's centre, was not too far away from seriously testing Scully on the hour before McGill was introduced by Crawford for the impressive Nisbet.

But, just two minutes later, the Pars were breached when Cooke, at the edge of the box, curled a fine effort beyond a crowd of players, and the reach of Scully, into the far corner of the net.

Then, incredibly, moments later, Goodwin's side hauled themselves right back into contention by scoring again.

It came from a corner which, despite his protests that he'd been impeded, Scully failed to gather and after the ball broke loose, Mullen was there to hammer home from close range.

In an attempt to solidify things, Ryan was sacrificed for Kyle Turner as the clock ticked into the final 20 minutes.

Saints, though, were a completely different outfit to the one that turned up in the opening period and Tony Andreu almost lashed them level from range after winning the ball from Coley, but thankfully for the Pars his shot cleared the bar.

But, in the 78th minute, another fine break almost produced a fourth goal for the visitors.

Beadling started the move, played the ball wide right for McGill, who advanced and then clipped a fine cross-field ball for Coley, who made great ground to get into the penalty area.

The on-loan Norwich City winger did well to get his shot away but Hladky was up to the task, deflecting it behind for a corner.

Despite five minutes of additional time being signalled, Dunfermline held out and registered a fine victory.

St Mirren: Hladky, P. McGinn, S. McGinn, Mackenzie, Magennis, Flynn, Andreu, Baird, Mullen, Cooke, Erhahon.

Subs: Lyness, Kellermann, Djorkaeff, MacPherson, Breadner, Walker, Glover.

Pars: Scully, Comrie, Morrison, Ashcroft, Martin, Paton, Dow, Beadling, Nisbet, Ryan, Coley.

Subs: Lang, Todd, Turner, Bowman, McCann, McGill, Gill.

Referee: Steven McLean.